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Stock market chart on LCD screen. Selective focus.

Global junk

Guarding Wealth: Scorned in the past, it’s become glamorous in a market driven by index funds

The investment market at times resembles a circus in which the strangest acts sell the most tickets. In the latest bit of acrobatics, sovereign junk bonds issued by national governments are turning in their best performance in years. For example, European sovereign junk returned 100 per cent in the nine years since the mid-2008 beginning […] Read more

Would it really be so bad to have a cool day?

Hart Attacks: In the era of climate change, I should be careful about the kind of weather I wish for

I am really sick of weather forecasters here in Calgary this summer. Finally, this morning one started to make sense — cool, wet days ahead. It doesn’t seem to matter that half of Western Canada is on fire, crops are parched, and ponds and creeks are dry, these forecasters keep telling me here in Calgary […] Read more

Transportation, energy and agriculture

A new era brings change and challenge

Transportation players are working together after the end of the CWB's single desk

Greg Northey, industry relations director for Pulse Canada, says grain companies have had to handle more logistical challenges since the end of the Canadian Wheat Board’s single desk’s, which he said was “probably an interesting learning curve.” Northey is unsure how that learning curve affected grain movement in years with big issues. But he thinks […] Read more

Post-harvest marketing plan time

With your crop in the bin, it’s time to get to the work of grain marketing

Your location will have had a big impact to your harvest outcome this year. Weather issues stressed crops across the Prairies. Whether you had a bumper crop or a poor crop, you need to review your marketing plan. This is the critical time when prices and trends can be set for the better part of […] Read more

Farm safety conference to focus on new and emerging agricultural trends

The Canadian Agricultural Safety Association (CASA) will hold
its 23rd annual conference “Agsafety — Make it a Record Year!” and annual general meeting in Edmonton, Alta., from October 3 to 5, 2017. “Farming is dynamic,” says Marcel Hacault, CASA’s Executive Director. “Trends, technology and legislation affect how we deal with farm health and safety. CASA is […] Read more

Get set for soybean harvest

Agronomy tips... from the field

Now’s the time to make sure you’re completely set for a successful soybean harvest. Generally speaking, this year’s crop will be at about the same stage in maturity as last year. The main difference is going to come from the overall plant structure. Last year’s moist, warmer conditions gave us more growth and pod height, […] Read more

Keeping the rural identity in prairie towns

When Prairie towns grow and change, some may shed their farming roots

It’s strange to think of cities, towns or villages as having an identity. But they all do. And every community, growing or stagnant or dwindling will at many points throughout its run be faced with the existential and difficult question: who am I? This is especially relevant for the large swath of rural Canadian communities […] Read more

Farm Financial Planner: Lessening the sting of the AMT after land sales

With planning, retiring farmers can reduce the burden of the Alternative Minimum Tax

A couple we’ll call Herb, who is 67, and his wife, Mary, 60, farm 600 acres of grain and hay and another 500 acres of pasture in central Manitoba. They have put much of their effort into a 100 head cow-calf operation. Their two children, Suzy, 32, and Astrid, 29, are married and have no […] Read more

Food guide isn’t keen on red meat

Hart Attacks: The problem isn’t that I don’t know about good food... the problem is me

Boy, I can’t wait for the revised version of the Canada Food Guide to hit the store shelves so I can start eating properly. Health Canada is proposing changes to the food guide steering people away from red meat and more towards “alternative” proteins such as plant-based proteins — your peas, beans, lentils, chickpeas, or […] Read more

Water, salt and cows in pastures

Let’s use disaster as a chance to learn more about measuring the salt content in water

The recent loss of 200 head of stock due to bad water brings the subject of water and cows into sharp focus. The loss occurred at a pasture near Shamrock, Sask., about 75 km southwest of Moose Jaw. Let me first offer condolences to the producers who lost cattle. In my experience cows are more […] Read more